Flattened by a Film

Remember that Steve Martin movie “Father of the Bride, Part II,” where his wife and daughter are both having babies at the same time? When they showed the movie on TV, I sat on the floor watching it alone and sobbed.

It’s supposed to be a comedy. I had seen it before. It has appealing actors, delightful dialogue and a happy ending. So what’s my problem?

The usual. I don’t have a baby. I won’t have a baby. I’m never going to have a baby. I don’t have a grandchild, I won’t have a grandchild, I’m never going to have a grandchild. My father will never look at me with the kind of pride that Steve Martin gave his pregnant daughter or the adoration he showed his pregnant wife. I will never have an excuse to run around wth stretchy clothes, an unrestrained appetite and that “glow” pregnant women are supposed to have. I will never have a little girl or boy to throw her or his skinny arms around my neck and hug me. I won’t have a child to teach how to read, how to knit or how to bake cookies. I won’t–

Stop. What kills me most of all is that I could have had children. And I didn’t. What have I done? Why did I marry men who didn’t want children? Why did I let them take this away from me? So I watch this comedy about having babies and I cry, cry, cry. I close the door so my husband won’t hear me. I told him I was over it.

This is a passage from my Childless by Marriage book. The ebook will be online by Mother’s Day. Meanwhile, have you felt this way? Two weeks ago, I saw a mother and baby at church while I was playing the piano. It was all I could do to hang on. I saw the same mother and baby last Sunday and felt nothing. I just never know.

What gets you crying when you think you’re managing your childlessness and the tears come out of nowhere?

Copyright 2012 Sue Fagalde Lick

6 thoughts on “Flattened by a Film

  1. You never know, maybe if you had tried for children it might not have happened or something else might have gone terribly wrong. You just don't know for sure that you missed out on that movie-like happy ending. You are a good writer and your book sounds intriguing.


  2. My sister just had her first baby and I never thought it would level me like it has. I'm struggling between my our pain and being loving and encouraging for my sister. The first day I held her little girl, I felt a knife go through my heart in a way I've never experienced. I've held many babies over the years so not sure why my niece would send me reeling. My sister is the type of person that never really wanted kids until her biological clock finally ticked. Even then she was okay if it didn't happen. I've have wanted children my entire life. As a little girl I would stuff towels up my shirt and pretended I was pregnant (My mom was pregnant at the time). My Barbie's were always expecting. I just feel so disappointed and cheated.


  3. Anonymous, you're right. It might not have happened. We'll never know. Thanks for the compliment.

    Jewlzhec, I'm sorry for your pain. When I got the news that my brother's little girl had been born–and named after me–I hung up the phone and sobbed. It was supposed to be good news, right? But it hit me hard.

    Barbie was pregnant? Oh my.


  4. Sue and Jewl, I am right there with you. Just recently, my husband's best friend announced that his wife is pregnant, and on the same day another of his friends announced that his wife is having triplets. And they were both so excited! (The first even mentioned how “sexy” he thinks pregnant women are.) Oh man, was my pillow tear-soaked. How could God put three babies in one woman's womb, and none in mine? What hurts the most for me is the same thing you mentioned about the movie, Sue. I'll never have a man look at me lovingly as the mother of his children. My husband loves me tremendously and I know that, and I love him. But there's a huge chunk of the female experience – that time of “glowing”, of pride of creation, of having people rub my belly like there's a miracle happening inside, of bringing a new person into the world – that's missing. I wish my husband felt the way his friends felt about their wives having children.


  5. Invitations to baby showers, baby announcements, all of those Christmas cards with everyone's children happily smiling at me are all enough to get me going!


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